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Playing a role like the central character in director Robert Rodriguez’s Alita: Battle Angel is a task that requires a lot of CGI work, and a good amount of mocap to boot. But on top of those fantastical elements is a very physical component, something that actor Rosa Salazar, and everyone else involved in the film’s production, totally understood.
Now, in preparation for the film’s home video release, we have an exclusive clip of just how intense Salazar’s training regimen was, and it’s pretty impressive. See for yourself below:
As mentioned in the Alita: Battle Angel video above, it took roughly 5-6 months of training after Roza Salazar got the role to get her in shape for the part. That in and of itself is impressive, considering most films probably would have just used CGI stunt doubles and flashy effects to nail down the impressive way Alita moves throughout her travels in Iron City.
But watching the footage from the various training sessions, as well as remarks from folks like Salazar, producer Jon Landau, and stunt coordinator Garrett Warren, it’s amazing to see just how much practical work went into getting Alita: Battle Angel’s central character battle ready. Seeing Rosa train in everything from martial arts to roller blading, which definitely came in handy during the Motorball sequences, is a feat that speaks to the dedication that is seen in every inch of this film’s being.
But, of course, it’s not just Rosa Salazar behind Alita’s impressive physical thrills. As the actor herself discusses further in the clip above, there was a handful of women that threw themselves physically into portraying Alita: Battle Angel’s protagonist, particularly in service of the following skills:
It takes a lot of girls to bring Alita to life. It takes about nine girls. I’m doing all the acting, and doing all I can do martial arts wise. But then there are other girls who take it from there, who can twirl through the air six times, who can contort their bodies because they’ve been doing it since birth. They really take it to the next level.
Knowing the level of detail that producer James Cameron and director Robert Rodriguez were looking to impart onto Alita: Battle Angel’s blend of practical skills and effects, as well as cutting edge CGI, the level of effort required to really nail Alita’s role seems like par for the course. That doesn’t rob Rosa Salazar or any of the stunt performers and trainers who aided her in shaping the outcome of the film, as no matter how clear the path to such a result may seem, it’s never as simple as showing up and putting in the minimum effort.
Alita: Battle Angel won’t be on Digital HD until July 9, with 4K UHD, Blu-ray, and DVD releases landing on July 23.